Universal Health Stock Falls 12% as Covid Continues to Hurt Operations, Analyst Expects Shares to Stay Under Pressure -Breaking
After Universal Health reported a lower-than-expected adjusted EPS, shares fell more than 12% Tuesday in premarket trades
Quartile 1 adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $2.15 was reported by the healthcare provider, which is lower than $2.44 for the same quarter last year. It also missed the consensus estimate of $2.45 per share. The net came to $3.29 Billion, an increase of 9.3% YoY. This is higher than the $3.25 billion expected.
“Our operating results during the first quarter of 2022 reflect continued uncertainties related to the COVID-19 pandemic as well cost escalations related to the nationwide shortage of nurses and other clinical staff and support personnel,” the company said in a press release.
“As a result, our labor costs were higher than anticipated, and patient volumes at our behavioral health care facilities were lower than anticipated, which unfavorably impacted our operating results during the first quarter of 2022.”
Although the company said it didn’t change its 2022 operating results forecast, it warned that it may be forced to “make reductions to our 2022 full year operating results forecast at a future date if the unfavorable operating trends experienced during the first quarter of 2022 do not improve.”
Citi analyst Jason Cassorla took note of “another difficult quarter” for UHS. Analyst Jason Cassorla expects UHS stock will come under pressure following earnings.
RBC analyst Ben Hendrix said:
“UHS 1Q22 results fell below expectations on familiar labor cost headwinds, which offset decent organic volume growth in the acute care segment. In the behavioral segment, there was a shortage of nurses, which created capacity limitations, which impacted volumes. With the initial guide still within reach, management has maintained its full year outlook for now, but noted that a guide-down could come in the future if the labor backdrop does not improve.”
By Senad Karaahmetovic